Yes, this is a very late update and…no. you didn’t miss month eight.
Month eight was pretty much the arrival of the chickens and getting them settled in. You can read more about that here. If you are new to this series you can catch up by reading about months one through eight here.
Since Month Seven we had been trying to break into the Farmer’s Market scene….
….and then things became a bit topsy turvy as Mother Nature kindly (ha) revealed a hole in our market gardening plan. From May on through June and July we didn’t have much to offer.
We decided then to place our focus primarily on where the money was coming in: the co-op, hoping we’d have peppers and tomatoes galore coming on as the lettuce phased out.
But for reasons I have yet to understand, they just…didn’t…quite…grow. ::sob::
Perhaps it is the soil, perhaps it is the weather, perhaps it is the fact that we used heirloom varieties exclusively….we don’t really know and we’re experimenting here and there to try and figure out.
All of these setbacks however were solaced by the fact that we finally sold our home! We closed on the deal and happily turned the keys over to the new owner on July 19. It was a bittersweet ending to the “Living in a Vintage Home” chapter in our lives. If you are interested in learning more about our colonial 1930′s home and why we chose it I wrote about it here and here on our old blog.
Sooo here’s where we’re at now…….
*We’ve taken a few steps back to enrich our soil using cover crops but even those have not grown well so it is going to take some time. Lots more time. Weeds grow great though ~ bermuda grass, like a champ. Beautifully covering all of our beds. Especially those that were smothered with our sheet composting technique. We haven’t given up on sheet composting though! We’re currently working to cover all of our beds and paths with a thick layer of hay cut from our property.
*We’re focusing on the positive, taking a look around at what has worked: so far (besides the weeds and bermuda) sunflowers, garlic, and kale. We have lots and lots of kale in spite of the heat.
*Rather than try to force our business plan into a mold that may/may not work we’ve decided to slow down and let our homestead show us what she can do. What is this climate best suited for? Husbie keeps saying, “Follow the abundance”. So we are, and realizing that a plan we end up with may be entirely different than the one we started out pursuing.
*We also ripped out our lettuce when the weather turned and replaced it with bush beans. So far, those are doing great too. Peppers? Not so much although we have a few here and a few there.
*Meanwhile we have moved the chickens from the brooder to the coop, and they spend a good bit of time in the tractor scratching up bugs and fertilizing the soil.
Our plans for month ten: (wow, has it been ten months already?) gear up for a fall planting. The tiny lettuces are already under the grow lights.